Entertainment: 2023 Oscars: Best Picture Predictions

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After a second consecutive awards season up-ended by the pandemic, the 2023 Oscars should see a return to relative normalcy. The 95th Academy Awards is set for March 12, 2023 in its traditional home, the Dolby Theater. Films released theatrically from January 1 to December 31 of 2022 are eligible for consideration. Scroll down for the 2023 Oscars Best Picture predictions. (Only movies confirmed for release in 2022 are included; keep checking back as new contenders enter the race.)

Some of the early Oscar hopefuls were launched at Sundance in January and Cannes in May. Four more film festivals — Telluride Venice, Toronto and New York — will showcase more movies. Others will forego the festival circuit entirely.

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To make our 2023 Oscar predictions for Best Picture, we consider many factors: the pedigree of the filmmakers, the critical reception to their previous films, the box office tally and the track record of the studios.

UPDATED: August 4, 2022

DISCUSS All the Oscar contenders with Hollywood insiders in our notorious forums

Leading Contenders (in alphabetical order)

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“Amsterdam” (20th Century – Fall)

Director: David O. Russell

Writer: David O. Russell

Cast: Margot Robbie, Christian Bale, Anya Taylor-Joy, Robert De Niro

Plot: Set in the ’30s, it follows three friends who witness a murder, become suspects themselves, and uncover one of the most outrageous plots in American history.

“Avatar: The Way of Water” (2oth Century – Winter)

Director: James Cameron

Writer: James Cameron

Cast: Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, Stephen Lang, Cliff Curtis, CCH Pounder, Edie Falco, Jemaine Clement, Kate Winslet

Plot:

“Babylon” (Paramount – Winter)

Director: Damien Chazelle

Writer: Damien Chazelle

Cast: Margot Robbie, Brad Pitt, Olivia Wilde, Samara Weaving

Plot: Set in Hollywood during the transition from silent films to talkies, focusing on a mixture of historical & fictional characters.

“The Banshees of Inisherin” (Searchlight – Fall)

Director: Martin McDonagh

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Writer: Martin McDonagh

Cast: Colin Farrell, Barry Keoghan, Kerry Condon, Brendan Gleeson

Plot: Two lifelong friends find themselves at an impasse when one abruptly ends their relationship, with alarming consequences for both of them.

“Bardo” (Netflix – Fall)

Director: Alejandro G. Inarritu

Writers: Inarritu, Nicolas Giacobone

Cast: Daniel Gimenez Cacho, Griselda Siciliani

Plot: A comedy about a journalist in Mexico City.

“Empire of Light” (Searchlight – Fall)

Director: Sam Mendes

Writer: Sam Mendes

Cast: Olivia Colman, Colin Firth, Micheal Ward, Tom Brooke, Tanya Moodie, Toby Jones, Hannah Onslow

Plot: A love story that takes place in an English coastal cinema during the 1980s.

“The Fabelmans” (Universal – Fall)

Director: Steven Spielberg

Writers: Steven Spielberg, Tony Kushner

Cast: Michelle Williams, Seth Rogen, Paul Dano, Gabriel LaBelle

Plot: A semi-autobiography based on Spielberg’s own childhood growing up in post-war Arizona, from age seven to eighteen.

“The Greatest Beer Run Ever” (Apple TV+ – Fall)

Director: Peter Farrelly

Writers: Brian Hayes Currie, Peter Farrelly and Pete Jones who adapted the non-fiction book of the same name by Joanna Molloy and John “Chickie” Donohue.

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Cast: Zac Efron, Russell Crowe, Bill Murray

Plot: The true story of a man bringing beer to his childhood buddies in the Army while they are fighting in Vietnam.

“Women Talking” (UA – Fall)

Director: Sarah Polley

Writer: Sarah Polley, who adapted the novel of the same name by Miriam Toews.

Cast: Jessie Buckley, Ben Whishaw, Frances McDormand, Rooney Mara, Claire Foy

Plot: A group of women in an isolated religious colony as they struggle to reconcile their faith with a string of sexual assaults committed by the colony’s men.

Strong Contenders (in alphabetical order)

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“Armageddon Time” (Focus – Fall)

Director: James Gray

Writer: James Gray

Cast: Michael Banks Repeta, Anne Hathaway, Anthony Hopkins, Jeremy Strong,  Jaylin Webb

Plot: A deeply personal coming-of-age story about the strength of family and the pursuit of the American Dream.

“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” (Disney – Fall)

Director: Ryan Coogler

Writers: Ryan Coogler, Joe Robert Cole

Cast: Lupita Nyong’o, Letitia Wright, Danai Gurira, Winston Duke, Michaela Coel, Martin Freeman, Angela Bassett

Plot: A sequel that explores the world of Wakanda introduced in the 2018 film.

“Bones and All” (UA – Fall)

Director: Luca Guadagnino

Writer: David Kajganich, who adapted the novel of the same name by Camille DeAngelis.

Cast: Michael Stuhlbarg, Timothée Chalamet, Mark Rylance, Chloë Sevigny

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Plot: Maren, a young woman, learns how to survive on the margins of society.

“Causeway” (Apple TV+ – Winter)

Director: Lila Neugebauer

Writer: Elizabeth Sanders, Luke Goebel, Ottessa Moshfegh

Cast; Jennifer Lawrence, Brian Tyree Henry, Samira Wiley

Plot: A US soldier suffers a traumatic brain injury while fighting in Afghanistan and struggles to adjust to life back home.

“Don’t Worry Darling” (WB – Fall)

Directors: Olivia Wilde

Writers: Katie Silberman,  Carey Van Dyke, Shane Van Dyke

Cast: Florence Pugh, Harry Styles, Olivia Wilde, Gemma Chan, Chris Pine

Plot: A 1950s housewife living with her husband in a utopian experimental community begins to worry that his glamorous company may be hiding disturbing secrets.

“Everything Everywhere All at Once” (A24 – Spring)

Directors: Daniel Kwan, Daniel Scheinert

Writers: Daniel Kwan, Daniel Scheinert

Cast: Michelle Yeoh, Stephanie Hsu, Harry Shum Jr., Jamie Lee Curtis

Plot: An aging Chinese immigrant is swept up in an insane adventure, where she alone can save the world by exploring other universes connecting with the lives she could have led.

“Poor Things” (Searchlight – Fall)

Director: Yorgos Lanthimos

Writer: Tony McNamara, who adapted the novel “Poor Things” by Alasdair Gray

Cast: Emma Stone, Willem Dafoe, Ramy Youssef, Mark Ruffalo, Jerrod Carmichael, Margaret Qualley

Plot: The story of a young woman brought back to life by an eccentric but brilliant scientist.

“She Said” (Universal – Fall)

Director: Maria Schrader

Writer: Rebecca Lenkiewicz, who adapted the non-fiction book of the same name by Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey.

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Cast:  Carey Mulligan, Jennifer Ehle, Samantha Morton, Tom Pelphrey,

Plot: New York Times reporters Megan Twohey and Jodi Kantor write a ground-breaking story about sexual assault in Hollywood.

“The Son ” (SPC – Fall)

Director: Florian Zeller

Writer: Florian Zeller, who adapted his play of the same name.

Cast: Hugh Jackman, Vanessa Kirby, Laura Dern, Anthony Hopkins

Plot: Peter’s busy life with new partner Emma and their baby is thrown into disarray when his ex-wife Kate turns up with their teenage son, Nicholas.

“Tar” (Focus – Fall)

Director: Todd Field

Writer: Todd Field

Cast: Cate Blanchett, Nina Hoss, Noémie Merlant, Mark Strong

Plot: The story of  Lydia Tar, the first-ever female chief conductor of a major German orchestra.

“White Noise” (Netflix – Fall)

Director: Noah Baumbach

Writer: Noah Baumbach, who adapted the novel of the same name by Don DeLillo.

Cast: Adam Driver, Greta Gerwig, Raffey Cassidy, Alessandro Nivola

Plot: A contemporary American family attempts to deal with the mundane conflicts of everyday life while grappling with the universal mysteries of love, death, and the possibility of happiness in an uncertain world.

“The Woman King” (Sony – Fall)

Director: Gina Prince-Bythewood

Writers: Gina Prince-Bythewood and Dana Stevens; story by Maria Bello

Cast: Viola Davis, Lashana Lynch, Hero Fiennes Tiffin, John Boyega

Plot: A historical epic inspired by the true events that happened in The Kingdom of Dahomey, one of the most powerful states of Africa in the 18th and 19th centuries.

Possible Contenders (in alphabetical order)

“Blonde” (Netflix – Fall)

Director: Andrew Dominik

Writer: Andrew Dominik who adapted the novel of the same name by Joyce Carol Oates.

Cast: Ana De Armas, Adrien Brody, Bobby Cannavale, Julianne Nicholson

Plot: A fictionalized take on the life of Marilyn Monroe.

“Decision to Leave”  (MUBI – Fall)

Director: Park Chan-wook

Writers: Park Chan-wook, Jeong Seo-kyeong

Cast: Tang Wei, Park Hae-il

Plot: A detective investigating a man’s death in the mountains meets the dead man’s mysterious wife in the course of his dogged sleuthing.

“Elvis” (Warner Bros. – Summer)

Director: Baz Luhrmann

Writers: Baz Luhrmann, Sam Bromell, Craig Pearce, Jeremy Doner

Cast: Austin Butler, Tom Hanks, Olivia DeJonge, Helen Thomson

Plot: The story of Elvis Presley, from his childhood to becoming a rock and movie star in the 1950s while maintaining a complex relationship with his manager, Colonel Tom Parker.

“Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” (Netflix – Fall)

Director: Rian Johnson

Writer: Rian Johnson

Cast: Daniel Craig, Ethan Hawke, Jessica Henwick, Dave Bautista

Plot: Sequel to the 2019 film ‘Knives Out’.

“I Wanna Dance with Somebody” (Sony – Winter)

Director: Kasi Lemmons

Writer: Anthony McCarten

Cast: Naomi Ackie, Ashton Sanders, Stanley Tucci

Plot: Tracking Whitney Houston’s journey from obscurity to musical superstardom.

“A Man Called Otto” (Sony – Winter)

Director: Marc Forster

Writer: David Magee, who adapted the novel of the same name by Fredrik Backman.

Cast: Tom Hanks, Mariana Treviño, Rachel Keller, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo

Plot: A cranky retired man strikes up an unlikely friendship with his boisterous new neighbors. A remake of the 2015 Swedish film of the same name.

“Till” (UA – Fall)

Director: Chinonye Chukwu

Writers: Michael Reilly, Keith Beauchamp, Chinonye Chukwu

Cast: Danielle Deadwyler, Whoopi Goldberg, Jalyn Hall, Frankie Faison, Jayme Lawson

Plot: The story of Emmett Louis Till and the legacy of his mother who pursued justice for her lynched son.

“Top Gun: Maverick” (Paramount – Spring)

Director: Joseph Kosinski

Writers: Ehren Kruger, Eric Warren Singer, Christopher McQuarrie; Story by Peter Craig, Justin Marks

Cast: Tom Cruise, Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Ed Harris, Val Kilmer

Plot: Pete Mitchell continues to be a courageous test pilot, dodging the advancement in rank that would ground him.

“Triangle of Sadness” (Neon – Fall)

Director: Ruben Ostlund

Writer: Ruben Ostlund

Cast: Harris Dickinson, Charlbi Dean, Woody Harrelson

Plot: A cruise for the super-rich sinks thus leaving survivors, including a fashion model celebrity couple, trapped on an island.

“The Whale” (A24 – Fall)

Director: Darren Aronofsky

Writer: Samuel D. Hunter

Cast: Brendan Fraser, Sadie Sink, Samantha Morton, Ty Simpkins

Plot: A reclusive English teacher suffering from severe obesity attempts to reconnect with his estranged teenage daughter for one last chance at redemption.

Make your predictions at Gold Derby now. Download our free and easy app for Apple/iPhone devices or Android (Google Play) to compete against legions of other fans plus our experts and editors for best prediction accuracy scores. See our latest prediction champs. Can you top our esteemed leaderboards next? Always remember to keep your predictions updated because they impact our latest racetrack odds, which terrify Hollywood chiefs and stars. Don’t miss the fun. Speak up and share your huffy opinions in our famous forums where 5,000 showbiz leaders lurk every day to track latest awards buzz. Everybody wants to know: What do you think? Who do you predict and why?

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